<i>Dear Workforce</i> When Do You Start Offering Time Off?

September 17, 2000
Q Dear Workforce:
I am in the process of writing an employee manual and trying to create a time-off policy for part-time employees. I would appreciate some feedback on an acceptable waiting period before time-off hours are accrued.

--Julianne S.
  A Dear Julianne:

Among policies we've seen are those that range from date-of-hire to after-one-year-of-service. In today's tight labor market, companies that experience retention problems or waning morale should consider a policy that permits taking time off as it is accrued from date of hire.
Surveys support the importance of time off, especially among employees with families. The National Institute of Business Management reported in July 2000, in a survey of 1,008 men, that 70% of men in their 20s and 71% of men in their 30s said they'd swap pay for more family time.
Parents magazine reported in May 2000, in a survey or 120 dual-income households, that 75% of dual income couples are scaling back on work commitments to spend more time with families.
From a financial perspective, the State of California requires that accrued vacation time be paid at time of termination; therefore, it is not in the best interest of the employer to allow large accruals of PTO.

SOURCE: Work/life Benefits, Cypress, CA, August 16, 2000.
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